Brian Hyland

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Brian Hyland
Brian Hyland.png
Brian Hyland in 1967
Background information
Born (1943-11-12) November 12, 1943 (age 70)
Woodhaven, Queens, New York, United States
Genres Bubblegum, pop, country
Occupations Singer
Instruments Vocals, Guitar, Clarinet
Years active 1960–present
Labels Kapp Records, Leader Records, ABC-Paramount Records, Philips Records, Dot Records, Uni Records
Website Official site

Brian Hyland (born November 12, 1943) is an American pop recording artist who was particularly successful during the early 1960s. He continued recording into the 1970s. Allmusic journalist Jason Ankeny states, "Hyland's puppy-love pop virtually defined the sound and sensibility of bubblegum during the pre-Beatles era."[1] Although his status as a teen idol faded, he went on to release several country-influenced albums and had additional chart hits later in his career.[1]

Biography[edit]

Hyland was born in Woodhaven, Queens, New York.[1] He studied guitar and clarinet as a child, and sang in his church choir.[1] When aged 14 he co-founded the harmony group the Delfis, which recorded a demo but failed to secure a recording contract.[1] Hyland was eventually signed by Kapp Records as a solo artist, issuing his debut single, "Rosemary", in late 1959.[1] The label employed the Brill Building songwriting duo of Lee Pockriss and Paul Vance to work with Hyland on the follow-up, "Four Little Heels (The Clickety Clack Song)", which was a minor hit, and the songwriting duo continued to work with Hyland.[1]

Thus in August 1960, Hyland scored his first and biggest hit single at the age of 16, "Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini", written by Vance and Pockriss.[2] It was a novelty song that reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and sold almost a million copies in the first two months of its release, and over two million copies in total.[3][4][5]

Hyland moved on to ABC Records, where he began working with the songwriting and production team of Gary Geld and Peter Udell, and further hits followed with "Let Me Belong to You" and "I'll Never Stop Wanting You".[1]

Hyland's other major hit during this period was 1962's "Sealed with a Kiss", which reached #3 in 1962 on both the American and UK Singles Chart.[4][6] It stayed on the U.S. pop chart for eleven weeks. In 1975, "Sealed With a Kiss" was reissued as a single in the UK and became a surprise #7 hit (the song, revived by Australian Jason Donovan, charted #1 in the UK in 1989). Another 1962 hit was "Ginny Come Lately", which reached #21 on the U.S. chart and #5 in the UK.[4][6] Hyland's 1962 Top 30 hit "Warmed-Over Kisses (Leftover Love)" incorporated elements of country music into his work, which continued with singles including "I May Not Live to See Tomorrow" and "I'm Afraid to Go Home" and on the 1964 album Country Meets Folk.[1] This approach was out of step with the changes brought about by British Invasion bands. Hyland's commercial success became limited, but he continued in that vein and had further hits with "The Joker Went Wild" and "Run, Run, Look and See", working with producer Snuff Garrett and session musicians including J. J. Cale and Leon Russell.[1]

Hyland appeared on national television programs such as American Bandstand and The Jackie Gleason Show, and toured both internationally and around America with Dick Clark in the Caravan of Stars. The caravan was in Dallas, Texas on the day of the assassination of President Kennedy in 1963. To commemorate the event, Hyland wrote the song "Mail Order Gun", which he recorded and eventually released on his 1970 eponymous album.

From 1963 through 1969, Hyland scored several minor hits, but none reached higher than #20 ("The Joker Went Wild") on the U.S. pop chart. An album released in 1964 featured numbers that hearkened back to the 1950s including such hits as "Pledging My Love" and "Moments to Remember"—at a time when The Beatles were sweeping the pop music world with a very different style. Hyland afterward shifted into a phase of recording country music and folk rock styles. Songs such as "I'm Afraid To Go Home" and "Two Brothers" had an American Civil War theme. Hyland played harmonica on a few numbers.

Hyland attempted several departures from the norm, including the psychedelic single "Get the Message" (#91 on the U.S. pop chart), and "Holiday for Clowns" (#94), but despite their more-contemporary arrangements, they failed to get much airplay. He went on to chart just two more Top 40 hits, "Gypsy Woman" written by Curtis Mayfield, and a cover of "Lonely Teardrops" in 1971. Hyland recorded them in 1970, and Del Shannon produced the tracks.[7] "Gypsy Woman" reached #3 on the 1970 U.S. pop chart, making it the second-biggest hit of his career, selling over one million copies, and being certified gold by the R.I.A.A. in January 1971.[8] Two of his previous hits, "Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini" and "Sealed with a Kiss" were also awarded gold discs.[8]

By 1977 Hyland and his family had settled in New Orleans, and in 1979 the In a State of Bayou album, on which he had worked with Allen Toussaint, was issued by the Private Stock label.[1]

Hyland continues to tour internationally with his son Bodi, who assists on drums from time to time.[1]

Catalog consolidation[edit]

From 1960 to 1977, Hyland recorded a total of eleven albums for several different record companies. A twelfth album, Young Years, was a reissue. They included Leader Records, ABC-Paramount Records, Philips Records, Dot Records and Uni Records. Over the years, these record labels were consolidated and the recordings are now controlled by Universal Music. Universal has yet to release a CD compilation that includes all of Hyland's charted singles, invariably omitting a handful of minor singles that made the Billboard Top 100 (or the Bubbling Under chart).

  • 1967 - Leader Records ("Itsy Bitsy...") owner Kapp Records sold to MCA, Inc. and becomes co-owned with Uni Records ("Gypsy Woman").
  • 1974 - Dot Records ("Tragedy") sold to ABC Records ("Sealed With A Kiss")
  • 1979 - MCA Records buys ABC Records
  • 1998 - MCA parent Universal Music buys Philips Records ("The Joker Went Wild") owner PolyGram completing the catalog consolidation

Discography[edit]

Singles[edit]

Year Title
(Songwriters)
US[4] UK[6] AU
1960 "Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini"
(Lee Pockriss/Paul Vance)
1
8
2
1960 "Four Little Heels (The Clickety Clack Song)"
(Lee Pockriss/Paul Vance)
73
29
29
1961 "Let Me Belong to You"
(Gary Geld/Peter Udell)
20
-
-
1961 "I'll Never Stop Wanting You"
(Gary Geld/Peter Udell)
83
-
-
1961 "Lop-Sided, Over-Loaded (And It Wiggled When We Rode It)"[9]
(Kusik/Anton)
-
-
-
1962 "Ginny Come Lately"
(Gary Geld/Peter Udell)
21
5
19
1962 "Sealed with a Kiss"
(Gary Geld/Peter Udell)
3
3
22
1962 "Warmed Over Kisses (Left Over Love)"
(Gary Geld/Peter Udell)
25
28
42
1963 "I May Not Live To See Tomorrow"
(Gary Geld/Peter Udell)
69
-
-
1963 "If Mary's There"
(Gary Geld/Peter Udell)
88
-
-
1963 "I'm Afraid to Go Home" b/w "Save Your Heart for Me"
(Gary Geld/Peter Udell)
63
-
-
1966 "3000 Miles"
(R. Wayne)
99
-
-
1966 "The Joker Went Wild"
(B. Russell)
20
-
23
1966 "Run, Run, Look and See"
(M.H. Cooper/Ray Whitley)
25
-
38
1967 "Hung Up In Your Eyes"
(Sonny Curtis/Glen D. Hardin)
58
-
-
1967 "Holiday For Clowns"
(Sonny Curtis/Glen D. Hardin)
94
-
-
1967 "Get The Message"
(Michael Z. Gordon/J. A. Griffin)
91
-
-
1969 "Tragedy"
(Gerald H. Nelson/Fred B. Burch)
56
-
-
1969 "A Million To One"
(Phil Medley)
90
-
-
1969 "Stay And Love Me All Summer"
(Joel Hirschhorn/Al Kasha)
82
-
-
1970 "Gypsy Woman"
(Curtis Mayfield)
3
42
9
1971 "Lonely Teardrops"
(Tyran Carlo/Gwen Fuqua/Berry Gordy, Jr.)
54
-
75
1971 "So Long, Marianne"
(Leonard Cohen)
-
-
1975 "Sealed with a Kiss" (re-issue)
(Gary Geld/Peter Udell)
-
7
-

Albums[edit]

Family links[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Ankeny, Jason. "Brian Hyland Biography". Allmusic.com. Retrieved 28 February 2009. 
  2. ^ "Itsy Bitsy writer 'death' error". BBC News. 2006-09-28. 
  3. ^ "Nothing Itsy Bitsy ablout a Hit", TIME, 22 August 1960, p. 40
  4. ^ a b c d Allmusic.com - Charts & Awards (singles)
  5. ^ Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 125. ISBN 0-214-20512-6. 
  6. ^ a b c Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 264. ISBN 1-904994-10-5. 
  7. ^ Pareles, Jon & Romanowski, Patty (1983) The Rolling Stone Encyclopedia of Rock & Roll, Rolling Stone Press, ISBN 978-0-671-43457-1, p. 267
  8. ^ a b Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2nd ed.). London: Barrie and Jenkins Ltd. p. 280. ISBN 0-214-20512-6. 
  9. ^ "Brian Hyland - Lop-Sided, Over-Loaded (And It Wiggled When We Rode It) / I Gotta Go ('cause I Love You) - London - UK - HLR 9262". 45cat. Retrieved 2012-01-13. 

External links[edit]